Late 19th century American fiction
writer, best known for "The White Heron
," The Country Doctor
, and The Country of Pointed Firs
. Initially her works were considered unworthy of study because of a lack of depth and detailed plot, but the rise of cultural studies
has led to more widespread interest in Jewett's regionalist
Jewett was born in South Berwick, ME in 1849 and died 60 years later in the same town. Indeed, most of her works deal with her intimate knowledge of Maine and New England and its characters.
For most of Jewett's life, she lived and traveled with Annie Fields, widow of publishing magnate James T. Fields. The two were part of a great network of powerful women of the American Northeast, independent successful women living in times when such an idea was hard for most to accept.
Most of Jewett's work is currently in print, and recently much of her work has become available online. The English Dept. at UNC has put The Country of Pointed Firs online with very (good) detailed annotations at http://sites.unc.edu/storyforms/pointedfirs.